Does anybody really care...that I have no clue when this thing starts.  The track's website says the green drops at 1:30 Central.  But I'm so used to convertin' east coast times and west coast times, that I've
forgotten the mathematical formula for figurin' out my own time zone.  I'm pretty sure that, because I live
in Louisiana, ya hafta divide by zero.

After bein' accused of fixin' itself a Pepsi last week in Daytona, NASCAR travels all the way up to the Windy City for the in-arguable...(beg pardon)...inaugural Tropicana 400.   Chicago is the first of two new races added to the schedule this year.  There's another cork poppin' at the end of September for the Kansas Speedway.  Both tracks are brand new.  Both, mile and halfers.  And both in the Central Time Zone.

Hmm....Chicago & Kansas.  Kinda weird that a couple of old 8-track bands spring to mind.  Are there any other tracks like that?...Bristol? No....Dover? No.....Poco? No.....But hey, Atlanta has a track and a Rhythm Section.  Spooky, eh?

Stop it!  Nuff ramblin', Jim.  It's a hard habit to break, but I'm tryin' cut back on the bad puns and the side-trackin' and the blatherskitin'....and the usin' of words I just looked up.  I'm wantin' to in-factuate these little notes with more lesser-known information, that ya'll can use to further enjoy your "NASCAR experience."  (And can you think of anyone that knows more lesser that me?)  This is supposed to be about racin'; not double-wide tape players, or rock groups, or songs you hear over Eckerd's muzak system, etc., etc., et Cetera.

...At least the puns are gettin' better. 

Chicago:  A fast lookin' track with a funky lookin' back...stretch.  It's all bowed out.  That, along with 18 degrees of bankin' and a tri-oval frontstretch, makes this place look less like a racetrack and more like the candydish I made in 10th grade pottery.  No coolers allowed, which is a little odd. But speakeasy of this place; The beers are still less than $20 a cup.  And slim pickin's in the bleacher department.  75,000 seatin' capacity.  Hell, I was at Charlotte once when they packed in over 3.9 million people. 

The track is run by Joie Chitwood, of the two-wheeled Chevettin' variety.  And although called Chicagoland Speedway, the track is actually located 'bout 25 miles south of the big city, where it's a little roomier, in Joliet.  But hey, what's in a name?  That which we call a rose by any other name would-...(They get it, Jim. They get it.)

.......smell as sweet. ('cept for Dave.)

The Busch boys gotta crack at this track yesterday and just about scraped all the paint off the walls.
9 caution flags, a black flag, and the fact that 42 of the 43 cars didn't finish, helped hand former Cowboys coach, Jimmie Johnson, his first series win.  A coupla corn-fed K-Martians qualified on the front row for today's race and hopefully, after a little more rubber gets laid down, the racin' groove'll grow wide enough

Oh, I can't do this.  I've no time to be lookin' up all this tripe.  The race starts in either 2 hours, or 15 minutes (I'm still not sure,) and my opus has no magnum.  My point has know return.  So yank out the old vinyl, my fellow time-zonians.  I'm throwin' care (as well as dust) to the wind and carryin' on MY way:..Word puns.

Oops.  Shoulda saved those for the end of September...

Dave - Sterling's the only one of our drivers to start in a single digit qualifying spot.  He goes green from 9th.  He finishes 25th, or 6th, or 2nd, or 4th......Eh, 25th. 

Mollie - After last week's Daytona non Quala, Foyt's car comes back strong and has the 8th happiest hour.  Hornaday Colours your  21st.

Kim & Paul - Martin's startin' 18th, but barely got it up to the top 30 in Happy hour.  A little chassis tunin'.  A little air pressure.  A little pill.  And Baby, What a Big Surprise.  A Vi-egregious 9th.

Lori, Andrea & Tony - Rusty's findin' it Hard to Say I'm Sorry to his crew for the lousy weekend he's havin'. He'll make it up today.  4th.

Reagan - I pulled some strings and you should be seein' that Smirnoff Ice car pretty soon....Yeah, but Will You Still Love Me when Labonte Lalevenths?

Jeff & Doc - After gettin' screwed by last week's bogus black flag,  I'm afraid to say anything bad about your driver this week...Other than, Stewart;  You're the Inspiration.....for restraining orders. 6th.

Stacy - Explain it to my Heart how the fastest car out there qualifies 28th.  Jeff's Chasin' the Wind for his 4th win of the year. Too bad.  2nd. 

Ted - Steve had a miserable Saturday in the Parked car he wrecked in the Busch race.  And I think it'll be next 4th of July before he wins again.  17th.

Kathy - Before you left for Memphis, I told you:  If You Leave Me Now, I'll take away the very car that you want to win.  Kurt's Busched and his Sharpie looks dull. 26th.

Carl is Wishin' he was Here.  But his driver selection is still Pendling.  When you Come to My Senses, let me know.

Paul Parker - Question 67 & 68:   Did Dale really cheat?  And is he ready to kick Jimmy's and Johnny's ass?  Feelin' Stronger Everyday.  8th.

Pam - Kenseth's been Searchin' So Long for that first win of 2001....Tsk tsk tsk   Look Away down the road, Matt.  15th.

Michael - What Can I Say?....What Does it Take?...Where Do We Go from Here?...27th.  What Else Can I Say?.....I can say I'm 'bout to miss the race!  I just heard somebody Star Spangling.

...What the hell time is it?
Tropicana 400
Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is?....
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